Meet hybrid wiz, Shane Bannister of ComAp Pty Ltd.
Graduating as an Electrical and Electronic Engineer from Flinders University with Honours in 2008, he has been involved with diverse automation projects in the Industrial and Construction Sector.
Shane then moved into a project management role in 2010 focusing on Oil & Gas and Defence.
He was involved in the PACE Zenith 2013 Project of the Year, as well as the 2013 RMS Quality Innovations Award winning project upgrade to Sydney’s ANZAC Bridge.
ComAp Pty Ltd has been greatly involved in remote power and enabling hybrid technologies in the Asia Pacific region for a number of years.
Since joining ComAp in 2014 as Area Sales Manager, Shane has been establishing key relationships with the industry OEM suppliers while focusing on growing and expanding on opportunities for hybrid power generation through Asia Pacific.
Shane was involved with a panel discussion on the evolution of enabling technologies at Informa’s annual Remote Area Power Supply Conference earlier this year.
Last week we had the opportunity to speak with Shane in an exclusive interview about his experience and views for the industry in the Asia Pacific region.
Q: Shane given your expertise working in Asia Pacific, what role do you think renewables play into existing remote power stations?
A: “Asia Pacific presents significant opportunity for the introduction of renewables into existing remote power stations across a large number of isolated islands and the introduction of PV has been widespread with good successes. Most installations however can be classed in the low-penetration category which lends itself well to the existing manual or ageing power stations that are found throughout Asia Pacific. The introduction of medium/high penetration of renewables is something that requires a much more thoughtful approach which should take advantage of existing assets in order to allow future expansion and open the door to introduction of high-penetration renewable technology, although care must be taken to ensure that the existing reliability and efficiency of the system is not compromised.
Taking existing manual or ageing diesel and/or gas power stations and upgrading them to a fully automatic and robust system, with some embedded intelligence, allows them to become “Hybrid-enabled”. This essentially opens the door for high-penetration renewable technologies to be introduced to the system while retaining the original robust and reliable asset, ensuring that system reliability and efficiency is maintained.”
Q: Can you share with us some of the projects you have been involved with?
A: “ComAp has had great past successes in Asia Pacific, upgrading the 14MW power station on the island of Bora Bora to a fully automatic system which is no longer required to be manned full-time. This site is now hybrid-enabled and fully prepared for introduction of medium/high-penetration renewables.
Similarly, ComAp was engaged to integrate a base of diesel generators into the 3MW wind farm on Vanuatu which, due to intermittent shutdowns, would periodically leave the island without power. The upgraded system was able to mitigate these shutdowns and provide continuous and reliable power. The project success has sparked interest in expanding the wind farm to 4.4MW.
A recent project on another island has provided automation of the ageing manual power station and integration of a solar installation. The ComAp system provides a dynamic spinning reserve to ensure that during a cloud event the delivery of power is un-interrupted, maintaining the reliability in the system and the efficiencies in the existing diesel generator assets while reducing the diesel consumption. Due to this installation there is real opportunity for expansion of the system in the future.”
Q: What do you want to see happen in the future for this industry in the Asia Pacific?
A: “I hope to see solutions and equipment providers come together and discuss potential benefits as well as their perceived barriers to deployment in the region. It is important to also discuss future opportunities to enable a higher introduction of renewables to many more locations through smart upgrades on existing assets as well as looking at ensuring that new assets are planned so as to take best advantage of the latest technology.”
See the latest events from Informa’s Energy Series here